Making homemade air fryer croutons is so EASY! This crouton recipe is moreish, super tasty and only takes 4 minutes to air fry! Pair them with your favourite salad or soup!
What are croutons
Croutons are small cubed pieces of crispy dried bread which have been re-baked or fried. Croutons can be plain or flavoured with oil, garlic, herbs, butter, cheese, bacon and various spice blends. Croutons are crispy and crunchy, mostly paired with salads and soup.
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Different types of seasoned croutons
Croutons are so veritable when it comes to the different types of flavours you can achieve. You can either flavour the oil, add seasonings / spices, herbs, use a pre flavoured bread or add cheese or cured meats. Here are some croutons variations below;
- Garlic croutons
- Garlic and parmesan croutons
- Crotons with bacon
- Italian croutons
- French onion soup croutons
How to make croutons with garlic bread
Making croutons with garlic bread is a great way to use up leftover pieces. Simply cut up into cubes and air fry for 4-5 minutes at 190 °c /375 °f. You can also bake in an oven or Sauté in a pan. You shouldn’t need to add oil to the bread as the garlic butter should be sufficient to help the croutons crisp up and provide an amazing garlic butter flavour!
How to make croutons shapes from bread
To make croutons from scratch is pretty simple to do! All you need to do is slice bread into 1 inch or 1 cm cubes. The best type of bread for croutons is slightly dry/stale bread as the croutons will cook and crisp up quicker whilst cooking. More fresh and softer bread will take longer to dry out whilst cooking. In this recipe I’ve used a ciabatta loaf. Ciabatta is an Italian white bread made from wheat flour, water, salt, yeast and olive oil. It has a great crispy exterior already and amazing flavour already enriched with olive oil. You can also use these other types of bread to make croutons;
- Sourdough bread
- White sliced bread
- Panini bread
- Low carb keto sliced bread
- Rye bread
How to make homemade croutons in an air fryer
Making croutons in the air fryer is a quick and efficient. You save time compared to using a convention oven as there is no need to preheat! Here’s how you make them;
- Slice the ciabatta bread into 1 cm cubes and add to a large bowl.
- Pour over olive oil, add the Italian seasoning, salt, pepper and mix.
- Place the croutons into the air fryer, cook for 3-4 minutes at 190 °c /375 °f. Halfway through cooking turn shake the air fryer basket to rotate the majority of the croutons, so that they can cook on the other side as well.
- Once cooked remove the croutons from the air fryer basket.
How to make croutons in the oven
If you don’t have an air fryer don’t worry as you can bake homemade croutons in the oven. Add cubed bread that has been seasoned and mixed with olive oil, to a baking tray. Bake in a preheated oven for 6-7 minutes at 190 °c /375 °f.
How to make croutons in a pan on your stovetop
You can also make croutons without using an oven or an air fryer! Croutons can be toasted in a medium preheated shallow pan or cast iron skillet on a stove top / hob. They will take 6 minutes to cook once the pan is hot. Take care to flip the croutons pieces over whilst cooking to ensure they do not burn.
What are the benefits of an air fryer
Air frying is such a great way of cooking food! The popular small counter top electric air fryer convection oven, mimics the process of “frying food” without having to deep fry in oil! Here are some of the top benefits of cooking with an air fryer;
- Healthier – Air frying is a much healthier alternative to deep or shallow frying food. Up to 80% less fat can be achieved in certain air fried meals by using this cooking method rather than frying conventionally in oil.
- Even cooking – Because the fan in an air fryer circulates at a high speed within a small space, food tends to crisp up quicker and cook evenly throughout.
- Time efficient – Although some air fryers have a pre heat setting, air fryers generally heat up very quickly. Due to their size, cook times are substantially lower compared to an oven, which can take up to 15 minutes to pre heat fully and come up to temperature.
- Easy to use – Air fryers are very easy to use and are a great kitchen tool for cooks that might not be as confident in the kitchen.
- Saves space – As air fryers are small and portable, they are great for people who may not have access to a fully functioning kitchen. For example a college student or someone who lives in a studio apartment where you may not have access to a full size oven.
- Versatility – Air fryers are probably the most versatile kitchen gadgets available. Not only can you air fry food, you can also bake, grill, toast, steam and roast ingredients in the air fryer.
What air fryer do I use?
I’ve tested quite a few air fryers and one of my favourites is the Instant Vortex 4-in-1 Air Fryer, 6 Quart/ 5.L. I love the size of this model and the large square shape air fryer basket, i find you can fit more food in air fryers shaped like this. The vortex air fryer comes with 4 built in smart programs in 1 appliance (air fry, roast, bake and reheat) so it’s super versatile! I especially love how easy the fryer basket is to clean as the drip tray on the base of the basket is removable.
What to have croutons with
You can use croutons in many dishes, here’s some ideas below;
- Salad – Most commonly croutons are paired with salad, for example a Caesar salad. They add a great texture to a range of other salads too.
- Soup – Croutons are great to add on top of soup for both texture and soaking up flavours. Slightly large shaped croutons are classically paired with French onion soup.
- Bread crumbs – you can use up leftover croutons by making them into breadcrumbs. Simply add croutons to a food processor and blend until your desired crumb texture forms. You can then use the bread crumbs for stuffing or even as a crispy crust to coat food with e.g. crispy chicken tenders .
How long will homemade croutons last
Homemade croutons will last for up to two weeks. Once the croutons are fully cooked, place them into an air tight jar to ensure they stay fresh and crispy.
Can you freeze homemade croutons
Homemade croutons are freezer friendly which is quite handy if you make a big batch. It’s best to store the croutons in a food bag before freezing. When you’re ready to use the croutons, add them straight into your air fryer basket or oven tray if baking and then cook for 7-8 minutes.
Frequently asked nutritional questions about croutons
How many calories in croutons
There are 82 calories per 1/2 cup in this air fryer recipe, a lot less than you will find if the croutons where deep or shallow fried.
How many carbs in croutons
Croutons are carb dense as they are made from bread which are naturally high in carbohydrates. There are 10.6 net carbs in this air fryer croutons recipe per serving.
Are croutons vegan
Croutons can be completely plant based and vegan if vegan compliant bread is used. The remaining ingredients such as olive oil, salt, pepper and Italian seasonings are all vegan friendly.
Are croutons gluten free
Most croutons contain gluten as they are made from bread which contains wheat. To make gluten friendly croutons, swap the ciabatta bread for a gluten free approved sliced bread or crusty loaf/roll.
Are croutons keto
Croutons are not keto friendly due to the high net carbohydrate make up of most conventional sliced breads and loafs. A great alternative would be again to use a specialist bread which is keto compliant.There are alot of high protein & low net carb bread products currently on the market.
Thank you so much for reading along. I hope you making your Homemade Air Fryer Croutons.
If you try this recipe, I would be grateful if you could leave a review and star rating, you can find this at the bottom of the page and recipe cardPrint
Making homemade air fryer croutons is so EASY! This Ciabatta bread croutons recipe is moreish, super tasty flavoured with Italian seasoning and only takes 4 minutes to air fry! Pair with your favourite salad or soup!
- Ciabatta bread 200g
- Olive oil 1/3 cup / 75ml
- Italian seasoning 1 x teaspoon
- Salt ¼ teaspoon
- Black pepper ¼ teaspoon
- Slice the ciabatta bread into 1 cm cubes and add to a large bowl.
- Pour over the olive oil, add the Italian seasoning, salt & pepper then mix.
- Place the croutons into the air fryer, cook for 3-4 minutes at 190c /375 Fahrenheit. Halfway through cooking turn shake the air fryer basket to rotate the majority of the croutons, so that they can cook on the other side as well.
- Once cooked remove the croutons from the air fryer basket. Serve on top of salad or store the croutons in an air tight jar once cooled completely.
Slightly stale bread works best if you are using regular sliced bread for this recipe as an alternative
- Category: Sides
- Method: Air frying
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: air fryer, croutons, soup, salad, air fried, bread, easy, homemade